Tag is exactly DUQstories
2020-11-01Nobody was prepared for the Covid-19 pandemic as it took the world by storm. In the earliest stages, many people ran into trouble finding things to help them cope with the lack of social interaction. However, as the pandemic progressed and businesses found ways to allow people to do the things they enjoy doing, the circumstances that made the pandemic feel unbearable for months, began to feel the slightest bit bearable. I have played hockey and baseball my whole life so due to the pandemic I found myself bored and at a loss for things to do. I began to play golf and enjoyed it while the warm months lasted but as the temperature dropped the opportunity to play the sport slowly diminished. I have always loved the winters because of the freezing ponds that allowed for outdoor hockey. However, this winter proved to be unusually warm for western New York and I was at a loss for things to do. After doing some research and browsing some community group posts, I found that many people were using skiing to help them get outside during the odd times. I had never been skiing before but with my experience on skates in the hockey rink I decided I would give skiing a chance. After a few phone calls to some close friends, I had borrowed enough stuff to be able to get out on the mountain. Luckily, skiing proved to be very similar to skating and my skills improved rapidly. The first night out was enough to get me hooked and I began skiing regularly. Of course, masks and social distancing were required but skiing provided an outlet for my family and me. We began skiing regularly and I looked forward to it every day we were unable to go. Before I knew it, I was completely in love with skiing. It provided a social environment when it wasn’t readily available, it provided a way to get outside apart from the usual walk around the block and lastly, it provided a way to spend time with my family outside the walls of the house. Without a few generous friends and some curiosity, skiing would’ve never been an option, it will forever be a huge part of my life and I don’t think that would’ve been possible without Covid-19. I hope others found ways to improve not only their health but also a hobby that made them happy as well.
2021-02-15The start of the semester was like that of any other except last semester I managed to secure an internship for the summer of 2020. Nursing school was already a difficult major to be in and I really didn’t think that it could get more difficult than that of junior year. I truly didn’t know what was to come. I will never forget being at clinical and hearing everyone mention the start of the virus. COVID-19 was on the backburner when it came to the most interesting topics of January 2020, but it would soon prove to be the most prominent in the upcoming months. I distinctly remember shadowing a nurse in the ICU one day and hearing the nurses discuss what was going to happen. “It doesn’t seem like it is coming here but trust me it is and when it does, we will need all the healthcare workers we can get.” This was a statement from one of the nurses that I will never forget hearing. At the time I didn’t fully believe the things that I were being rumored and didn’t think that we would ever be where we are today. As February and March arrived, COVID came to be part of everyone’s lives. Turning on the news, checking your timelines, and most day to day conversation held the topic of corona virus. Before we knew it, our lives changed completely. Our clinicals and classes were held remotely, you couldn’t leave your house without a mask, and we weren’t sure if we were going to be able to attend our internships. One thing that worried a lot of us was working while the virus cases began to spike. I knew that I would continue working as I was if not more than usual. Over the course of my internship I watched as COVID began to impact all the healthcare workers I was surrounded by. Safety precautions in the hospital setting were changing and at first, a lot of people were afraid to come in for their illnesses for fear of encountering a positive COVID patient. As time went on people became less and less afraid to come seek help at hospitals. With a large influx of patients coming in I could see nurses, aides, and doctors among others all begin to take the toll of the virus. This wasn’t necessarily due to exposure but more so that our exhaustion kicked in. Health care providers were and still are working countless hours to help in high census situations. The most frustrating aspect of quarantine has been watching people be noncompliant with mask requirements and stay at home orders. I wake up for work everyday and risk the wellbeing of everyone in my home including myself to help take care of those who need it. As the media has portrayed us as frontline workers, it felt slightly misleading while some of the public wasn’t contributing to lessen the blow of the ongoing problem. I started my internship to gain experience for my career. I didn’t know that I would grow accustomed to death and grief as fast as I have in the past year. COVID has shown me what it means to work hard and what struggles I can encounter in my career before I have even graduated and hold my diploma in hand. I currently work on the same unit I held my internship on as it has been converted into a COVID care unit. I go into work and experience exposure situations day by day but wouldn’t change my career for anything. The corona virus has taught me so much about what it means to be a nurse and take on healthcare as a career. In a few months as I graduate I will be prepared to take on whatever challenges it may have.